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Digital networking – how society benefits

The Internet, social media and digital communication systems have become increasingly important in the past. Today they are an integral part of social life.
What opportunities do this create in everyday life and how can civil society benefit from increasing digital networking? What role does the digital infrastructure play in digital participation and what requirements must be met?

Opportunities of digital networking for society

The digitalization of everyday life has progressed rapidly in recent years and decades. The Internet enables rapid data exchange at any time. This means information is quickly available to Internet users.

Mobile devices, especially smartphones, ensure that Internet users can access information at any time and from any location.

The same applies to communication. Digital communication systems and social media make it possible to communicate worldwide in real time. In this way, digital networking can be used to overcome distances and, above all, to break down cultural and social barriers. This offers a digitally networked society great opportunities in many areas and topics:

  • School, education and research
  • Economy and work
  • Social commitment and participation
  • Democratic participation
  • Health, quality of life and safety
The digitalization of everyday life has progressed rapidly in recent years and decades | Photo: © Daniel #724153771 – stock.adobe.com

Education, research and business

Sharing knowledge and obtaining information has never been easier than it is today. Digitalization makes this possible and thus facilitates access to education and knowledge. Digital educational offerings cannot completely replace school as we know it, but can meaningfully complement it – for example in the form of learning platforms and e-learning offerings. Such offers are by no means limited to traditional school education. E-learning offerings such as webinars or online conferences provide new opportunities, particularly in the area of ​​further education. Thanks to digital networking, professional training is possible quickly and regardless of location.

Highly qualified specialists are one – but by no means the only – advantage that increasing digital networking offers companies. Opportunities arise, for example, through new business models, decentralized economic structures, automation or even new forms of work. Remote workplaces make it possible to recruit and employ skilled workers far beyond your own company location or to make work and family more compatible through home office options and thus become more attractive as an employer. In this way, companies, employees and ultimately society as a whole benefit from digital networking in education and business.

Sharing knowledge and obtaining information has never been easier than it is todaySharing knowledge and obtaining information has never been easier than it is today
Sharing knowledge and obtaining information has never been easier than it is today | Foto: © vectorfusionart #7118485830 – stock.adobe.com

Opportunities for social participation and social commitment

A video call with your grandchildren or an exchange via messenger services: Digital networking and communication systems enable diverse forms of exchange with friends, family and acquaintances – even over long distances or with limited mobility. Older people in particular can participate in social life and overcome loneliness and isolation by using digital devices and services. This is important because it is often no longer so easy for older people in particular to actively participate in social life in their immediate living environment. Digital technologies help to overcome the isolation that often comes with it and to participate in life and social interaction for longer.

The integration of older people is just one aspect of many aspects of social integration through digital networking.

Social media platforms in particular enable digital inclusion to a large extent for many different people and thus create equal access to the digital world. Digital forms of networking have a particularly positive effect when they are combined with local offerings. A good example of this are neighborhood platforms or social media channels with a regional focus. They strengthen local social integration by promoting neighborhood networking at the local level. They also enable another important topic: direct political participation.

Empowerment and political participation

Digital tools can empower and encourage people to help shape social and political processes. This topic area is closely linked to social integration through digital networking and offers great potential, especially at the local level. Suitable digital platforms enable easy access to relevant public information from administration and politics. The concept behind it is called Open Government Data. Networked citizens can more easily obtain information and actively participate. In this way, transparency and democratic participation are promoted and contribute to an inclusive civil society. With the digital strategy, the German federal government wants to expand such processes and promote a future-oriented digital policy.

Empowerment and political participationEmpowerment and political participation
Digital tools can empower and encourage people to help shape social and political processes | Foto: © Day Of Victory Stu. #175319165 – stock.adobe.com

Opportunities through digital networking in the areas of health, quality of life and safety

As in the areas of social integration, business and political participation, digital networking can also improve health care – for example through simplified data exchange. Data and patient information can be exchanged more easily and quickly between patients, doctors and other healthcare facilities. This leads to more efficient medical care.

Especially in rural regions, telemedicine can significantly facilitate and improve high-quality medical care and access to specialists.

Increasing digital networking can also contribute to the security of society. Targeted analyzes of data and information make it possible, for example, to identify dangers or risks at an early stage and to take appropriate countermeasures.

Prerequisite for digital participation: digital infrastructure

In order to fully exploit the social potential and advantages of the Internet, a powerful, future-proof digital infrastructure is required. It represents the backbone for the future digitalization of the economy, education and society. The fiber optic network is considered the technology of the future. The aforementioned digital strategy of the German federal government also attaches great importance to the future viability of the expansion of a comprehensive fiber optic network.
It must therefore be pushed forward accordingly. In contrast to copper-based Internet connections such as DSL, the fiber optic network enables significantly higher bandwidths and faster data transmission. This is done by light pulses and therefore literally at the speed of light. Each connection receives its own fiber optic. This guarantees consistently high, stable data transmission – even when the network is heavily used by many users in a connection area.

2024-04-04 11:43:08

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